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Push by Sapphire


by Sapphire

Series: Precious (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,7791402,108 (3.82)118
  1. 40
    The Color Purple by Alice Walker (Anonymous user, sruszala)
  2. 10
    The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (greytone)
    greytone: These books are similar because the protagonists begin their journey in the most dire of circumstances and the novels are the debut novels for the authors. Their stories end very differently, however; one triumphantly, the other tragically.
  3. 00
    The Children and the Wolves by Adam Rapp (kaledrina)
  4. 01
    Cashay by Margaret McMullan (meggyweg)

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» See also 118 mentions

English (136)  Spanish (2)  French (1)  Finnish (1)  All (140)
Showing 1-5 of 136 (next | show all)
it's hard for me to say that this was just alright, because i think that the story it tells is so important to be out in the world, that people need to hear more of these stories, as hard as they are to hear. but that's not enough reason to like or recommend a book. the story also felt a bit manipulative as the author kept piling more and more on the character (as i know happens in real life) for her to handle, even as she's "saved" by a teacher who shows her her worth (a trope i kind of like even though it's overused and overdone).

i've read enough books that are written in the voice of the uneducated, complete with misspellings and grammar they narrate in, to say that this crucial aspect of the book isn't done well enough. the voice of precious was off for the first half of the book, which made the book itself feel off, since it was mostly told through her eyes. (when it was narrated in 3rd person, that also felt like a misstep as the diction should have been correct, but it was merely improved.) once precious improved her reading and writing, her character's voice worked better for me, and the story flowed accordingly.

overall i just wish this was better than it was, but i recognize the importance of telling these stories. also, the end was well done, and sapphire but in a little poetry there at the end that i liked; i'd be interested in checking out her poetic work, which i think i might like better than this.

"Glasses is what I really want so my eyes not get so tired at night when I be reading. But you can't get all hung up on details when you trying to survive." ( )
  elisa.saphier | Feb 28, 2017 |
Claireece Precious Jones, who goes by her middle name, is a sixteen-year-old black girl in Harlem kicked out of school when she becomes pregnant by her father for the second time. When a teacher suggests she looks into an alternative school, Precious meets a teacher who believes in her and friends who also have difficult pasts.

The book is written in first person dialect by Precious, who is just learning to read and write so I felt like the character's voice was in my head talking to me. Some of the things that happen to her are horrible and graphic, and definitely let anyone know who may have a trigger with sexual abuse. However, her story is powerfully told and sadly believable. The ending might drive some people crazy, but I found it hopeful without being a fairy tale ending. ( )
  bell7 | Sep 20, 2016 |
I picked up this book after seeing the film version. I loved the film version and the book did not dissapoint. This story is both tragic and triumphant, as we read about Precious's struggles to escape her abusive home, get an education, and raise her children. Nothing seems to stop her, including her HIV-positive status. This is also a story about the shortcoming of the Wefare system in America, as well as the crumbling public school system. This may be a work of fiction, but it is so truthful because Precious's story could be the story of any low-income woman, anywhere is the United States. It's sad to think women with children live like this, but it's good to know that they can have a strong support system when government and education fail. ( )
  RojaHorchata | Jul 11, 2016 |
Very Deep. Highly Recommended. ( )
  Beatriz_V_F | Feb 27, 2016 |
This book is amazing. It is really sad and hard to read based on the graphic nature of the book and how it is written by a girl who can't read or write. It's hard to put down because you want Precious to succeed so bad. I wish Sapphire would have end the book differently with perhaps a little more detail. She kind of leaves you hanging towards the end. I recommend this book to people who can handle the disturbing content. ( )
  tina_thebookworm | Feb 12, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 136 (next | show all)
What do you get if you borrow the notion of an idiosyncratic teen-age narrator from J. D. Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye" and mix it up with the feminist sentimentality and anger of Alice Walker's "Color Purple"? The answer is "Push," a much-talked-about first novel by a poet named Sapphire, a novel that manages to be disturbing, affecting and manipulative all at the same time.

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Information from the Finnish Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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If thou be one whose heart the holy forms
Of young imagination have kept pure,
Stranger! henceforth he warned; and knew, that pride,
Howe'er disguised in its own majesty,
Is littleness; that he who feels contempt
For any living thing, hath faculties
Which he has never used; that thought with him
Is in its infancy. The man whose eye
is ever on himself, doth look on one,
The least of nature's works, one who might move
The wise man to that scorn which wisdom holds
Unlawful, ever. O, be wiser thou!
Instructed that true knowledge leads to love...

William Wordsworth
Every blade of grass has its Angel that bends over it
and whispers, "Grow, grow'"

The Talmud
For children everywhere. And for my teachers Eavan Boland, James Merrit, and most especially Susan Fromberg Schaeffer.
First words
I was left back when I was twelve because I had a baby with my fahver.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Black, on welfare, HIV-positive, illiterate, and pregnant by her own father (again), sixteen-year-old Precious finds hope and a support group in the form of a literacy program lead by a gifted teacher.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679766758, Paperback)

Claireece Precious Jones endures unimaginable hardships in her young life. Abused by her mother, raped by her father, she grows up poor, angry, illiterate, fat, unloved and generally unnoticed. So what better way to learn about her than through her own, halting dialect. That is the device deployed in the first novel by poet and singer Sapphire. "Sometimes I wish I was not alive," Precious says. "But I don't know how to die. Ain' no plug to pull out. 'N no matter how bad I feel my heart don't stop beating and my eyes open in the morning." An intense story of adversity and the mechanisms to cope with it.

Precious is now a major motion picture based on the novel Push by Sapphire, starring Gabourey 'Gabby' Sidibe, Mo'Nique, Paula Patton, Mariah Carey, and Lenny Kravitz. Enjoy these images from the film, and click the thumbnails to see larger images.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:04:02 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

Relentless, remorseless, and inspirational, this "horrific, hope-filled story" ("Newsday") is certain to haunt a generation of readers. Precious Jones, 16 years old and pregnant by her father with her second child, meets a determined and highly radical teacher who takes her on a journey of transformation and redemption.… (more)

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